Purchasing, Social Responsibility, & Animals
By Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3
What's Next In Socially Responsible Purchasing?
Socially responsible purchasing is a hot trend these days but there's one topic that's been sorely missing from every set of socially responsible purchasing guidelines I've seen. Today, I'll break new ground and give you a glimpse into the future of socially responsible purchasing by addressing that missing topic.
In an exclusive interview with me, Stephanie Downs, the Director of Corporate Affairs for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) - a large animal rights organization - identified many spend categories that potentially involve animals. Three present in nearly every supply chain are: leather furniture, leather laptop bags, and cleaning supplies that involve animal testing.
Downs says that "Many people think that leather is a byproduct of the meat industry and that is simply not true." She says that animals used for leather suffer a grueling transportation during which they are often deprived of food and water and their handlers "will break their tails (and) rub cayenne pepper in their eyes to get them going." Upon reaching the slaughterhouse, the animals' throats are slit and they are often skinned alive.
For some cleaning supplies, Downs shares that animals are unnecessarily "forced to swallow or inhale massive quantities of a test substance or endure the pain of having their eyes or skin chemically burned."
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